John Manley knows Ottawa 
He's a director of Nortel now and in an interview with the Ottawa Business Journal he says:
My experience has been that even people who have been laid off from Nortel have continued to be very loyal to the company ... even during the difficulties that company has experienced over the last couple of years, the attrition rate has been extraordinarily low, especially here in Ottawa, which I think demonstrates a remarkable degree of employee loyalty.

Sure - it's because of loyalty. Or maybe because Nortel has laid off about 13,000 people in Ottawa, JDS around 10,000, and a few tech startups have died in the past few years - do you think that is why the attrition rate is low? Many of those that were laid off had to leave the Ottawa area or change professions - not something many people do voluntarily. There just aren't many tech jobs in the area though things are better now than the past two years - maybe until the new round of layoffs hit Nortel.

No worries for the Ottawa economy though - the federal goverment keeps this town running smoothly:
The outlook for the Ottawa-Gatineau economy remains solid as the threat of a hiring freeze by the federal government appears to have few teeth, according to a report Tuesday.
By the end of the second quarter, local public sector employment was a an all-time high of 121,500. That compares with only 77,000 at the end of 1998, making for six straight years of healthy growth.

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